April 14, 2024

Mac Cardona, Joseph Yeo recall La Salle crown, forfeited title during champions’ reunion

Mac Cardona, Joseph Yeo recall La Salle crown, forfeited title during champions’ reunion
Facebook/Mac Cardona

Coming off an era of dominant guards for the De La Salle Green Archers including the likes of Mike Cortez and Renren Ritualo, the duo of Macmac Cardona and Joseph Yeo carried the university during the early to mid-2000s.

Captain Hook and the Ninja won together in the UAAP Season 64 four-peat squad, and then led La Salle to another title in 2004—that title would eventually be forfeited after it was discovered that DLSU fielded two ineligible players.

During La Salle's ring awarding ceremony for its past basketball champions, Cardona and Yeo had the time to reunite and reminisce about the good times. Even now, the chemistry and brotherhood remain tight.

"Tayo na laging magkasama, never naman tayong nagka-inggitan, pareho tayong pwestuhan," Yeo said in Cardona's vlog.

He further explained their dynamic inside the court, and how he and Cardona made sure to back up each other.

"Sinasabi ko nga sa’yo nung ’04, ‘wag tayong magsasabay masama ang laro kasi pag-iisipan tayong masama ni Franz (Pumaren). Kasi alam ni Franz tayo laging magkasama, iisipan tayo niyan, may ginagawang masama ‘tong dalawa. Pero never ‘di ba? Kapag masama laro mo, usually ako maganda, kapag pangit laro ko, maganda laro mo, ganun nangyayari sa atin."

Cardona brought up their title years asking, "‘Yung 2001 nag-champion tayo di ba? Ateneo tinalo natin, anong pakiramdam mo?"

Yeo spoke about the title's impact, especially because it's against rivals Ateneo Blue Eagles.

"Siyempre rivalry, ‘di ba? Alam naman natin ‘yung rivalry ngayon, Ateneo-La Salle, never nagtutugma na La Salle malakas, Ateneo malakas. Unlike during our time, rookie year natin di ba? Ateneo-La Salle parehong malakas e. During that time ibang klase. Kaya tingin ko naging positive for us, naging very popular tayo because of that rivalry."

The duo though admitted their 2004 title run was more special, even if the crown was stripped away.

"'Yung ’04, for me, kahit sabihin mo na-forfeit sa atin ‘yun, very memorable kasi ‘yung ’04 na ‘yun, underdogs tayo nun ah, hindi tayo malakas, puro bata kakampi natin nun. Iniisip nila ang gagaling ng kakampi natin sila (JVee) Casio, pero ang babata pa nila nun. Matanda lang nun, ikaw ako, (Jerwin) Gaco," Yeo stated.

"‘Yun talaga ‘yung para sa akin memorable na championship dapat natin, kasi ‘yun ‘yung team natin talaga," Cardona doubled down on the take.

Watch the whole vlog here: